older man on rowing machine

Tips to Help You Get Back to Working Out at the Gym

Rocking the gym as part of your New Year’s resolution can be a daunting task. While showing up may be half the battle, real results only come to those pushing out of their comfort zones and correctly utilizing equipment that may give you a twinge of the January Scaries – AKA that awful feeling of dread when faced with returning to the gym amid a sea of eager resolutioners after two months of indulgent holiday eating and partying. To help soothe the scaries, New York Sports Clubs (NYSC) is providing tips and tricks to make the most of your workout, working with some potentially underutilized (but highly effective) equipment to build your best body ever:

  • Rowing machine: Feel major burn while getting your Frank Underwood on! The rowing machine is great for strengthening legs, arms, upper back and core.
  • Standing Mountain Climber (sometimes known as a VersaClimber): While Standing Mountain Climber may look like something out of “Game of Thrones,” it’s great for  adding short bursts of calorie-burning cardio to your circuit training, its killer so you don’t need much time to work up a sweat and raise your heart rate.
  • Functional Fitness Equipment: This category includes everything from Bosu Ball (balance, winter workouts) to the UXF Zones at New York Sports Clubs. Sometimes these get skipped in favor of  kettlebells and stability balls but, asking a trainer how to use these along with TRX Suspensions and resistance bands can make for a stealthy sculpting session sure to give you cuts in all the right places.
  • Assisted Pull Up Machine: The idea of pull-ups often gives gritty images of a cinema-style boot camp montage, but many people don’t realize that you can take a lot of your weight off your arms by using this machine. Also, the more weight you put on the machine, the easier it is (counter-intuitive). So ask a trainer to show you how to do it, and skip the lines for this upper-body burner. When you only have 10/20 pounds on the machine, you’re ready for an un-assisted pull-up, and will look like a gym hero doing those!
  • Stairmaster:Rotating stairs may be a scary notion BUT, studies show that 1mph on a StepMill 5 provides the same calorie burn as running on a flat treadmill at 7mph (the average person walks/runs much, much slower than that on a treadmill). 1mph is level 10 on a StepMill3 or StairMaster. 1mph on a StepMill burns approximately 820 calories/hour for a 170lb person and burns approximately 675 calories/hour for a 140lb person.
  • Upper Body Ergometer: While this machine may look like a seated safe haven, it provides tough cardio perfect for short intervals. While sitting in a seat, you spin/crank your arms like a bike. It’s especially great if your legs are sore from workouts earlier in the week, or if you are recovering from an injury, say a broken leg, sprained ankle, etc. It tones shoulders, biceps and chest as well.

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